“Dil ki basti bhi shehar dilli hai; Jo bhi guzra usee ne loota”
(Delhi alone is a city of love; all those that have passed through have looted it)
So while you are in Delhi, it wont hurt actually to know a few mind blowing facts about the city which has been ruled over for 3000 years… while i know that everyone would like to see the “New Delhi” and not be stuck with some Tombs and ruins of Forts and Mosques, but the idea here is to bring to you the usual suspects (places EVERYONE visits, while in Delhi) with some facts and figures to get you interested in an era gone by..
Delhi’s history dates back to 5000 years ago with the advent of Mahabharata, where the Pandavas created the beautiful city of Indraprastha! Geographically it has been stated to be in the present day Delhi. Its fascinating to know that this city has been ruled over and over again by various rulers and has been almost destroyed 7 times and thus rebuilt.
Pandavas clan led to the Tomars which eventually led to Prithviraj Chauhan – the last Hindu ruler to rule. Post this the land went into hands of Md. Ghori and thus started a new era of Slave Dynasty and Islamic rulers which changed the face of Indraprastha completely. Time and again Delhi was captured, ruled and destroyed and yet rebuilt again till the British took over. Isnt it fascinating to know that this city of ours was captured again n again since it held extreme political and economical value. Today thus you two faces of Delhi, One which was built by the Mughal Dynasty which includes various Masjids and Tombs and Fort Palaces. Second is the opulent and lush ridges and colonial bungalows made by the British.
It is a crime to talk about this majestic city in only One post. There are over 100 monuments and ruins in the city of Delhi alone which holds extreme historical importance and talks about the religious faith and culture the people still follow.
I will try to showcase an overview of Old Delhi with as much as i have been able to explore, still their remains miles to go before i sleep.
Historical Monuments of Old Delhi – The USUAL Suspects
Built by Shah Jahan in 1656. its one of the largest Mosques in India.
Opening Hours: 7AM–12PM, 1:30–6:30PM
Address : Chandni Chowk, Delhi
Nearest Metro Station: Chandini Chowk
Points to Note: Its a religious place hence dress conservatively to respect the religion. Do not forget the cuisine it has to offer just opposite the Masjid. Its a Heavenly Paradise for Non Vegetarians
Red Fort- Lal Kila
The Red Fort was the residence of the Mughal emperor of India for nearly 200 years, until 1857. Built by Shah Jahan in 1648
Opening Hours: 9:30 AM – 4:30 PM
Address: Netaji Subhash Marg, Chandni Chowk, Delhi
Nearest Metro Station: Chandini Chowk
Points to Note: Its nearby the Jama Masjid hence can be done in one trip. Do not forget to check out one of the Magnificent Baoli inside the complex. Also you can bargain as much as you want with the shop keepers inside the premises.
Tallest Brick Minaret in the world. Built by Qutub-uddin-Aibak in 1192, it is a world heritage site.
Opening Hours – 7:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Nearest Metro Station: Qutub Minar
Points to note: Dont miss out the Iron Pillar in the complex also while you are visiting Qutub, make a point to visit the Mehrauli Archaeological park. Trust me you wont be disappointed. I probablly would have to cover it in my another post
Built in 1565 AD for placing Humayuns Tomb. It is worth a visit for its marvelous architecture and water channels.
Opening Hours: Sunrise to Sunset
Nearest Metro Station: JLN Stadium
it commemorates the 70,000 Indian soldiers who lost their lives fighting for the British Army during the World War I. The memorial bears the names of more than 13,516 British and Indian soldiers killed in the Northwestern Frontier in the Afghan war of 1919.
The foundation stone of India Gate was laid by His Royal Highness, the Duke of Connaught in 1921 and it was designed by Edwin Lutyens.
Nearest Metro Station: Central Secretariat
Lotus Temple, Purana Qila, Jantar Mantar and a few handful others make up the list of the usual suspects.
Keep watching out for my next post which is not about the usuals, but the hidden gems of Delhi.
Till then Stay Curious!